Fifty Laboratories of Democracy: The United States of America

Expecting a country as large and as pluralistic as the United States to adhere to a single set of laws, especially around highly controversial and divisive issues, is –IMHO– unrealistic and wrongheaded.  When it to comes to hot-button, social topics of the day such as abortion, gay marriage, gun rights, and recreational marijuana possession, I am a big proponent of strong states’ rights.  We are a country of a 330 million people that stretches a third of the entire North American continent.  Furthermore, we are a country of immigrants, composed of peoples from every region on earth, near and far.  As we often heard as schoolchildren growing up, America is more like “fifty laboratories of democracy.”  We are empiricists– what works well in Alabama may not be best for California.  And what people prefer in very cold Michigan may not work at all in very hot Florida.  This is perfectly fine– that’s the entire basis of America!

Being a strong Federalist, I believe in a small central federal government.  Obviously, in the Article of Confederation days, the federal government was too weak.  But fast forward to now, 2020, I think we’ve swung too far the other way.  Often times you hear about America being a “mixing pot” of peoples and cultures.  And this is true!  I definitely think there exists large swathes of the country where people from all walks have mixed and mingled– maybe during university, work, or just otherwise at Meetups and for fun.  Muslims and Christians have met, befriended, and married each other.  Black and white; Asian and Hispanic; etc.  That’s all great!  Mixing pots are wonderful and I personally love meeting people from different backgrounds and cultures.  And I think it’s fabulous and a genuine joy to do so.

But there are also other parts of the country that are more like a mosaic and most definitely not a mixing pot.  In just about every single one of the fifty states, you’ll find enclaves of highly-concentrated immigrant communities.  In New Jersey, there are whole neighborhoods and towns entirely Indian.  Indian grocers, Indian restaurants, Indian everything.  In California, in towns like Milpitas, you’ll wander around and see Chinese signage everywhere on cafes, clinics, churches, and laundromats.  Honestly, it gets to the point, whether in the Cuban communities of Florida, or Mexican communities in Arizona, that you could very justifiably wonder if you’re even in “America” anymore because you don’t see a single white person or any English anywhere.

But of course you are! It’s all America! That’s the beauty of it!

If you’re a rich multibillionaire and wish to live in a small, hyper-affluent neighborhood of ~3,000 people that is 92% white, you can! Or if you’re a bit poorer, a white supremacist, and want to live among your tribe, America’s got places for that too!

Like I said earlier– America is gigantic.  There is room enough in this great big, blessed country for all of us.  I am a staunch opponent against a muscular Supreme Court and big federal government because America is simply built on the fundamental bedrock of diversity and difference. We are not a one-size-fits-all-country.  If demographic trends continue, by 2050, America –a country founded by white settlers in Jamestown back in 1607– will become a “majority-minority” nation with non-white people (Hispanics, Asians, Blacks, etc) making up a majority of the country’s population.  The days of white majority are rapidly nearing an end so instead of fighting it (because you will lose), people should just accept this inevitable new reality. Be American! 😊

5 thoughts on “Fifty Laboratories of Democracy: The United States of America

  1. Hello there! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I genuinely enjoy reading your blog posts. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same subjects? Many thanks! Marlo Henchel

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